• Gordana Damjanović
Keywords: biotechnology, stem cells, researchers, financing, patents


Stem cell research is the foundation of the construction of the entire human organism, that is, life arises from them. Research should provide a better understanding of stem cell differentiation and development, with possible implications for the cure of hitherto incurable diseases. The therapeutic possibilities of stem cells are enormous, as are the funds that are invested in their research. Researchers, but mostly biotechnology companies, are committed to securing a monopoly over research results in the form of patents. The number of granted patents related to stem cells has dropped significantly in the last decade, not only in Europe but also in the United States. The question arises as to whether the restrictive stem cell patent policy in Europe or the restrictive public funding policy for research in the United States, has contributed more to this. The issue of who finances the inventor's efforts in this sensitive area is extremely important and has a great influence on the issue of who controls and who is the owner, i.e. the right holder over the patent-protected research results. The stagnation of university research and leaving the leading role to the private sector in this area is not in the interest of the social community. The social community must not allow private companies to play a leading role in investing, then reaping the benefits, but also in the exclusive competence over therapies. Public funding and “opening up research results” will help efficient, ethically responsible, and law-based progress in stem cell research and patenting.


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